Dublin stone and tile company ordered to pay headscarf-wearing job applicant €1,500 after asking where she was from originally

woman with headscarf
Firm ordered to pay €1,500 to woman wearing a headscarf who was asked at a job interview where she was from originally.

Dublin natural stone and tile outlet Deeward Ltd has been told to pay €1,500 to a headscarf-wearing woman after she was asked at a job interview where she was from originally, reports breakingnews.ie.

At Ireland’s Workplace Relations Commission (WRC), Adjudicator Marian Duffy ordered Deeward Ltd to pay Narimene Saad the money for discriminating against her on race grounds under Ireland's Employment Equality Act.

Ms Saad was being interviewed by the firm’s Operations Manager, Ray Sood, for the position of a part-time administrative assistant. She said he had asked her where she was from. She told him she was from Germany and he asked here where she came from originally. She said she was born in Algeria.

Ray Sood told the Adjudicator the question was asked in the context of a friendly chat as he is the son of immigrants from India.

He said the company has 70 employees, about half of them non-Irish – 22 from Poland, one each from Brazil, India, Italy, Romania and England, five Croatian and two Russian.

The firm denied that the question was discriminatory. Another candidate was appointed to the position at the company.

Ms Duffy stated that she was satisfied Mr Sood did not ask the Irish candidate and candidates of a different nationality who were not wearing a headscarf about their nationality and concluded: “I cannot accept that it was an appropriate question."

Ms Duffy found that a separate claim made by Ms Saad of discriminatory treatment on the grounds of religion was not well-founded.